Caring Ministries

At SPC, we try to provide our members with resources that meet their needs and enhance our ministry of care. Sometimes that need is some dedicated attention from a pastor, deacon, or Stephen Minister. Other times, they just need a little reminder that God’s love is there to envelope them in a loving embrace.

Pastoral Care

Our pastors are always on hand to meet with those who may be going through a difficult time. Revs. Joyce Shin and Sarah Cooper Searight provide a warm hand to hold and caring presence to pray with for members who are hospitalized or home bound, or experiencing grief. They can provide short-term pastoral counseling and offer referrals for longer term help. Please call or e-mail Revs. Joyce Shin and Sarah Cooper Searight directly to set up an appointment.

Deacons

Deacons of a church are traditionally charged with “deeds of love and mercy.” That is an apt description of the 21 members of SPC’s Board of Deacons. Members who are called to serve here minister in the name of the congregation to individuals who are sick, bereaved, shut in or who are returning from a hospital stay or in need of special short-term help. On Sunday mornings, they escort those who ride the bus from local retirement communities and deliver flowers, copies of sermons, and worship recordings. On Communion Sundays, they “extend the table,” serving communion to those unable to be here in person. When needed, they offer or arrange rides to medical appointments and provide meals. They deliver Easter lilies and Christmas poinsettias, and send birthday cards. Being a deacon means being of service to others. No job for the deacons is ever the same as the last; their goal is to meet the needs of those they serve.

Deacons are available to visit those who are isolated from the life of the community. Each deacon is in touch with his or her visitees every 3 weeks or so. If you or a family member would appreciate such visits, please contact Rev. Sarah Cooper Searight at 610-543-4712 ext. 117 or sarah.cooper.searight@swarthmorepres.org.

Stephen Ministers

Since 1995, Stephen Ministers at SPC have extended the pastoral care of our congregation to our own members, as well as into the community. They show Christ’s love by being there to listen on a weekly basis for about an hour, supporting those who find themselves going through a time of difficulty. Confidentiality is assured. Stephen Ministers at SPC receive 4 hours per month of supervision and regular continuing education.

What is Stephen Ministry?
Our congregation‘s Stephen Ministry equips lay people to provide confidential, one-to-one Christian care to individuals in our congregation and community who are experiencing difficulties in their lives. Our Stephen Ministers have a gift for caregiving, and receive 50 hours of training in providing emotional and spiritual care. They are a Christian friend who listens, cares, prays, supports, and encourages, and is someone who will “be there” for his or her care receiver.

Stephen Ministers Care for People Facing Tough Times
We all experience challenges in life—times when we could benefit from the support of a caring Christian friend. Stephen Ministers are ready to provide the emotional and spiritual care we need when faced with a crisis or difficulty. Examples include the loss of a loved one, hospitalization, divorce or separation, illness, loneliness or discouragement, unemployment or job loss. Please know that Stephen Ministry is a confidential ministry. The identity of those receiving care and what takes place in each caring relationship remains private.

Stephen Ministry Literature
The Stephen Ministry program provides the following helpful resources.

  • In the Fellowship Hall lobby there is a rack of Care Notes brochures on many topics of spiritual concern, from grieving a death or divorce to providing support for aging parents. There are also Care Notes written for children and youth.
  • The Stephen Ministry library (located in the Study) has many books, DVDs, and other resources for lending to those going through difficult or dark times or for those sharing that journey with someone they love.
  • For those who have lost a close family member, our Stephen Ministers send a series of four grief booklets during the first year.

If you—or someone you know—could benefit from the care of a Stephen Minister or if you feel a calling to join this ministry, please contact Rev. Sarah Cooper Searight at 610-543-4712 ext. 117 or sarah.cooper.searight@swarthmorepres.org.

Shawl Ministry

SPC’s Shawl Ministry started in April 2003 when an article appeared in The Inquirer about a group of knitters who had been inspired to knit shawls for those in need. We now have knitters and crocheters who contribute regularly to this ministry, with close to 1,000 shawls being giving to individuals in need of something warm and soft to remind them they are held in prayer.

New volunteers are always welcome! For the most part, volunteers work on their own time, but we will happily find a mentor/partner for anyone who wishes to work in community. Patterns are available at the Shawl Ministry website (www.shawlministry.com) and hard copies can be found on the bulletin board outside the church office. Finished work can be brought to the church office at any time and our pastors, in collaboration with deacons and input from members who pass on concerns, will ensure that the shawls get to those who will benefit from their warmth. If you know of someone who would benefit from a shawl, please take one from the bin in the sacristy. Labels and notes of caring are available in the drawer above.

Contact Us! We Would Love to Hear From You

Week-at-a-Glance

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February 21, 2018
  • Feasting on the Word (Study)

    February 21, 2018 / 6:00 pm - 7:30 pm

    In this study, asimple “Lenten feast” of soup, bread and salad expands to a feast on the Word.The emphasis in this study will be on metaphorical and narrative approaches tothe Bible. Over 2000 years of interpretiveapproaches inform our Biblical work today as we journey together with criticalinsight, seeking meaning and purpose in life. The following writers will inform our study: Walter Brueggemann, CarolNewsome, Sally McFague, Marcus Borg, Walter Wink, Amy-Jill Levine, Amos Wilder,Everett Fox and Barbara Brown Taylor.  Led by Rev.s David Carter Florence, Joyce Shin, and Sarah Cooper Searight.

  • Parish Life Committee (Study)

    February 21, 2018 / 7:30 pm - 9:00 pm

    Monthly committee meeting

  • Personnel Committee (Baker)

    February 21, 2018 / 7:30 pm - 9:30 pm

    Monthly meeting of the Personnel Committee

February 22, 2018
  • Service Learning: SPC & CCSA (CCSA)

    February 22, 2018 / 4:30 pm - 5:30 pm
    The Chester Charter School for the Arts, 1500 Highland Ave, Chester, PA 19013, USA

    Last year, 5 youth and 5 adults from SPC met regularly with 25 high schoolers at Chester Charter School for the Arts. We started out by getting to know one another. Then we met with Chester City leaders who offered to us a project to rehabilitate William Penn Park in Chester (the ACTUAL first landing spot of William Penn into this area). Throughout the spring and summer, this group worked in teams to identify the major areas of need for the park, and began the work of clean-up culminating in a day-long clean up project late July 2017.

    Now, we’re ready for Stage 2! This spring and summer, we will be working towards the revitalization. This involves plans for installing new fencing for safety, new park furniture for those who will come out and enjoy time there, and a mural developed by you all in collaboration with local artists. 

    This is a great opportunity to meet new friends, to work on a worthwhile project, and to gain some service hours. Hope you'll join us!

  • Youth Choir rehearsal (Loeffler Chapel)

    February 22, 2018 / 6:30 pm - 7:15 pm

    Youth Choir welcomes all 6th-12th graders who enjoy singing! We rehearse weekly, and always welcome newcomers.

  • AA (McCahan Hall)

    February 22, 2018 / 8:00 pm - 9:30 pm

    Contact: Tom Fitzsimons (c) 610-304-0681
    email: tom.fitzsimons@gmail.com

February 24, 2018
  • Memorial Service - Ann F. Adams (Sanctuary)

    February 24, 2018 / 11:00 am - 12:00 pm

    A service of Witness to the Resurrection and celebration of the life of Ann Forsman Adams. All are welcome. Following the service, guests are invited to greet the family at a reception in Fellowship Hall.

  • Memorial Reception (Fellowship Hall)

    February 24, 2018 / 12:00 pm - 1:00 pm

    Those attending the memorial service for Ann Adams are invited to greet the family and one another over some light refreshments in Fellowship Hall following the service.

February 25, 2018
  • Early Worship (Loeffler Chapel)

    February 25, 2018 / 8:00 am - 9:00 am

    In this 45-minute service, those worshiping engage with scripture through faithful discussion in lieu of a sermon.

  • Gather & Sing! (McCahan 220 & 225)

    February 25, 2018 / 9:00 am - 9:20 am

    Sunday mornings begin with music! Children age 4-5th grade are invited to “gather and sing” at 9:00 a.m.to talk about the lessons of the day and what’s happening in worship. They learn the musical responses sung in worship and various songs and hymns that reinforce the lessons of the day.

  • Sunday School for Toddlers (McCahan 222)

    February 25, 2018 / 9:00 am - 11:15 am

    Toddlers (ages 2 & 3) gather for "Frolic: Little Steps, Big Faith.” Children engage in this delightful early learning curriculum that teaches them about God and the world around them. Class meets in the Orange Room (222).

  • Pre-confirmation (Youth Room)

    February 25, 2018 / 9:00 am - 10:00 am

    Middle schoolers (grades 6-8) meet every Sunday in the Youth Room, where an entertaining but thoughtful team of leaders serve up donuts along with honest conversation around Christian values and a faith that is lived 7 days a week.

  • Adult Class: Celtic Christianity (Study)

    February 25, 2018 / 9:00 am - 10:00 am

    Brigid of Kildare lived from 451-523 a.d. in Ireland. She is known in Celtic Christianity as the golden haired one who loves the earth, represents female leadership and the sacred feminine, loves midwives, is the muse of poets and musicians, embraces compassion for the poor, for strangers, and for those seeking refuge. Come and learn more about her in this interactive class to deepen awareness about Celtic Christianity.
    Led by Mary Reindorp.

  • Confirmation (McCahan Hall)

    February 25, 2018 / 9:00 am - 10:00 am

    9th graders are encouraged regularly to be part of this series of classes on faith formation. From early November to mid-May, they will explore the breadth and depth of the Reformed tradition, along the way leaning on Friends in Faith and reading most of the Gospel of Mark.

  • Sunday School for Pre-schoolers (McCahan 220)

    February 25, 2018 / 9:20 am - 10:20 am

    Pre-schoolers and Kindergarteners retell the morning's Bible stories through games, play, and crafts. Class meets in the Purple room (McCahan 220). Parents are expected to pick up their children by 10:10 to head to worship.

  • Sunday School for Grades 1-2 (McCahan 225)

    February 25, 2018 / 9:20 am - 10:20 am

    1st & 2nd graders retell the morning's Bible stories through reading, games, crafts, and story-telling. Class meets in the Green room (McCahan 225). Parents are expected to pick up their children by 10:10 to head to worship.

  • Sunday School for Grades 3-5 (McCahan 226)

    February 25, 2018 / 9:20 am - 10:20 am

    3rd - 5th graders learn the morning's Bible stories through reading, re-enacting, games, crafts, and story-telling. Class meets in the Pink room (McCahan 226). Parents are expected to pick up their children by 10:10 to head to worship.

  • Worship in the Sanctuary (Sanctuary)

    February 25, 2018 / 10:15 am - 11:15 am

    This service embodies a classic worship tradition. Biblical and faithful preaching bring God’s Word to life. Musical leadership comes through the Chancel Choir and our pipe organ. Elders serve as liturgists and each of our choirs offer music on a regular basis.

  • Worship in the Chapel (Loeffler Chapel)

    February 25, 2018 / 10:15 am - 11:15 am

    In this service, participants are invited to worship God with hands and feet, as well as words, songs and silence. Elements of worship take many forms, from art to movement to quiet contemplation.

  • Children's Activities (McCahan Hall)

    February 25, 2018 / 10:40 am - 11:15 am

    Children age 4 -12 are welcome to stay in worship with their families OR to head up to McCahan Hall following "A Time with Children" to enjoy enrichment activities in a one-room-schoolhouse setting.

  • Child Care (Nursery - McCahan 224)

    February 25, 2018 / 8:45 am - 11:45 am

    Infants and toddlers are well cared for in this sunny corner room in the Children's Education wing. Parents should try to arrive early enough to let their child get comfortable and to complete a registration form if they have not already done so. They should also bring their own diaper bag, clearly labeled with the child's name and stocked with whatever might be needed. Thank you!

  • Bear Hugs Ministry (Fellowship Hall)

    February 25, 2018 / 9:00 am - 12:00 pm

    New and gently used teddy bears and other small cuddly stuffed animals are collected for distribution by local authorities to children that have witnessed domestic trauma or violence.

  • Coffee & Fellowship (Fellowship Hall)

    February 25, 2018 / 11:15 am - 12:15 pm

    Parish Life serves up Equal Exchange coffee and hot tea and invites us all to be in community. Consider this an invitation to introduce yourself to someone you don't yet know!

  • Women's Lenten Retreat Signups (Fellowship Hall)

    February 25, 2018 / 11:15 am - 12:15 pm

    On Saturday, March 3, our PW (Presbyterian Women) will be hosting a retreat for women of all ages around the theme "Sensing Our Way Through Lent." Rev. Joyce Shin, Rev. Sarah Cooper Searight, and Director of Music Meghan Meloy Ness will lead this time together. Stop at the information table Sunday morning to learn more and tell us you will be coming!

  • Lunch & Movie: Stories We Tell (Loeffler Chapel)

    February 25, 2018 / 12:00 pm - 1:30 pm

    StoriesWe Tell

    In this inspired,genre-twisting new film, writer/director Sarah Polleydiscovers that the truth depends on who's telling it. Polley is both filmmakerand detective as she investigates the secrets kept by a family of storytellers.BYO lunch; PW (Presbyterian Women) will provide beverages.

  • Walking the Walk (Main Line Reform Temple)

    February 25, 2018 / 2:00 pm - 5:00 pm
    Main Line Reform Temple, 410 Montgomery Ave, Wynnewood, PA 19096, USA

    We will begin with a dive-in activity and then transition to the Q & A Panel with religious leaders from various faith traditions. They will be sharing a meaningful object or symbol from their faith tradition, and then they will address several questions that were provided in advance of our session.

    During the second half of our afternoon, you will be “Speed Faithing.” Participants will be divided into small groups, and each group will meet with a religious leader for a short period of time (10-12 minutes) to ask their burning questions and to engage in dialogue. When time is up, the participants in each group will stay seated and the religious leader in each small group will move to sit with another group. Religious leaders continue to rotate for conversations with each group. At the end of the cycle, we will gather together to debrief.

    Contact Rev. David Carter Florence (david.florence@swarthmorepres.org) if you are interested in going! There are currently three regulars from SPC who attend.

  • Middle School Youth Group (McCahan Hall)

    February 25, 2018 / 4:30 pm - 6:00 pm

    Faith formation, food, and fellowship - a great Sabbath diet! All 6th-8th graders welcome; please use the main parking lot entrance.

  • Youth Dinner (Fellowship Hall)

    February 25, 2018 / 6:00 pm - 6:30 pm

    Middle schoolers, high schoolers, and their advisors gather for some table fellowship most Sundays. All welcome!

February 26, 2018
  • February Committee minutes due

    February 26, 2018

    Minutes of all committee meetings held this month are due to Dorrie McGrath (spcparish@swarthmorepres.org) no later than the last Monday of the month.

February 27, 2018
  • Committee Chair & Coordinator Workshop (Fellowship Hall)

    February 27, 2018 / 7:00 pm - 9:00 pm

    This evening's goal is to equip both current and incoming committee chairs withsome of the tools and resources they need to be effective leaders andcommunicators in the work they do within and on behalf of the body of Christthat is Swarthmore Presbyterian Church. Committee chairs and coordinators are asked please to RSVP to Dorrie McGrath (spcparish@swarthmorepres.org) no later than Wednesday, February 21.